Forum OpenACS Q&A: OpenACS vs ACS API difference

Posted by Claudio Pasolini on
Hi every body.
I'm new to OpenAcs, but I've already developed several applications
using Oracle and the API available in standard ACS. I've found
particularly useful the new DB API (db_foreach, db_dml ...) and
others like ad_page_contract and I'm quite surprised not to find them
in OpenACS.
Am I missing something? Is there a place where the differences
between ACS and OpenACS are highlighted?

Thank You in advance.
Claudio Pasolini

Posted by Jonathan Marsden on
I think you are comparing ACS 4.x with OpenACS 3.x? That API
difference exists between ACS 3.x and ACS 4.x too!

OpenACS 4.x will have that new DB_ API just as ACS 4.x does; but right
now OpenACS 4.x is still in early development.  If you are in a
position to help with the OpenACS 4.x development, the code is
available via anon CVS.  If not, you'll have to stick to the
ACS/OpenACS 3.x API for now if you want your modules to work in the
currently released OpenACS.

Posted by Claudio Pasolini on
Thank you for answering, Jonathan.
I've used ACS 3.4 (the new DB API are available from this release, I think). I also followed the reccomendations of Philip Greenspun published in 'Building documents in ACS' using ad_page_contract, doc_set_property and doc_body_append.
I have to establish programming standards for a new project and so I need to know if there are relevant API differences between ACS 3.4 and OpenACS. Ideally I would build an application capable of working both with Oracle and PostgreSql.

Claudio Pasolini

Posted by Don Baccus on
The API's you mention appeared circa ACS 3.4, the current OpenACS is based on 3.2.x (we'll be releasing 3.2.5 "momentarily", as we've been saying for a couple of weeks).

The ad_page_contract and database api's have been backported to OpenACS.  I'm not sure what the plan is for making them available in the 3.2.5 release, we've talked about having them available as separate downloads to be patched into the release for those who want them.

I suggest you contact Roberto Mello directly (you can get his e-mail address from and ask him about plans to make these backports available.  He's organizing the 3.2.5  release while most of the rest of us concentrate on OpenACS 4.x efforts.